Why is everything more expensive in the UK?

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Why is everything more expensive in the UK? Empty Why is everything more expensive in the UK?

Post by bikeralw on Mon May 06, 2019 3:52 pm

This is prompted by the gas thread elsewhere, where it's been noted Campinggaz, and bottled gas in general, is much cheaper on the continent than here in the UK.

I've just ordered an item (made in Japan) online from a supplier here in the UK, costing £169. I've just watched an American review of the same item on You Tube, price in the USA $100.

As another example, a new Moto Guzzi motorcycle, made in Italy, has recently been launched, £8000 here in the UK, 8000 euros on the continent, $7000 in the USA.

My son has recently returned from the USA loaded down with quality jeans, jackets etc that were almost half the price of the same things here.

Al.
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Why is everything more expensive in the UK? Empty Re: Why is everything more expensive in the UK?

Post by rogerblack on Mon May 06, 2019 5:56 pm

Import duty on motorcycles is 6 or 8 per cent depending on engine size then add 20% VAT on duty inclusive price so that will account for some of it.

If your son was loaded down with more than £390 worth of personal import goods then legally duty & VAT would have been due.

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Why is everything more expensive in the UK? Empty Re: Why is everything more expensive in the UK?

Post by Roopert on Mon May 06, 2019 6:01 pm

I don't think there is a simple, single explanation. It's a combination of factors - one being the existence of Sterling, which isolates our market from bigger ones. Our exit from Europe is probably only going to make that worse. At the moment I buy quite a lot of moderately expensive equipment from Europe, in Euros, rather than pay 20% more to buy the same thing in the UK, but whether that will be as easy in a few months time I don't know.

Another major factor is cartel-like behaviour by the big manufacturers. Their prices are all higher here because they agree with other big manufacturers that they will be. Again, I don't see greater distance from the EU making any positive contribution to this situation.

Examples in recent years: a Kenwood headunit, which was £600 in Germany, but £1000 in the UK. A solar controller which was 20% cheaper, direct from Germany. A VW multi-function steering wheel which (brand new) was half the price from Poland than the cheapest UK price.

There are also some items which simply don't sell in enough volume in the UK. A good example from 20 years ago were MiniDisc products. I used to import these (both discs and players) direct from Japan, because that was the only place where volume of sales made them really cheap!

Car parts from the USA is another good example. The last major purchase that I made from there (starter motor and alternator for a Chrysler 383) was £100 less than UK prices, even with shipping, import duty and VAT paid!
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